Turn Me On, Dead Man: The Complete Story of the Paul McCartney Death Hoax

Andru J. Reeve

The timing was right. Paul had been spending all his time with his just-increased family and not doing interviews to keep himself in the press. Deep into the religion of British rock, American college students were on acid and ready for a new post-Kennedy conspiracy to sink their teeth into. So when “Tom” called a Detroit rock-talk radio show and repeated an old British rumor that the cute Beatle had been killed in a car wreck and replaced with a look-alike and that the Beatles had planted “clues” all over their songs and record covers, a college newspaper reporter heard this and ran a hoax story about the “tragedy” (years in advance of Negativland’s ax murder hoax!), and something clicked. Every wire service ran the “story,” and “backward masking” was upon us forever. With feet completely on the ground, the book sensibly follows how the rumor spread and then looks at and debunks the main “clues” in the legend. The obscure “John started it as revenge for the ‘bigger than Jesus’” debacle is enjoyably mentioned—and in the book’s only nod toward conspiracy, the author concludes most bizarrely by questioning rocker Terry Knight’s audience with Paul at Apple Corps UK, and Maclen Music’s subsequent song publishing of Knight’s Capitol Records 45 in the U.S. called “Saint Paul.” MS

Publisher: Popular Culture Ink
Hardback: 224 pages

Fellini on Fellini

Federico Fellini

Begins with Fellini in a sickbed fever dream melting from adult to child, with nuns and priests popping in and out of view, and Fellini profusely flowing back and forth between life and film—just like Amarcord!—a point driven home by the presence of eight photos from Amarcord and one of Fellini making the film. Includes charming stories from most of Fellini’s life, interspersed with 82 manifestoes on his art: lots of circuses and clowns; his wife actress Julietta Masina; breakdown (Toby Dammit); and subsequent recovery to confront the film of his own life in the finale of 8 1/2. “I’ve seen this blessed film of mine. And it’s something like my own nature. And yet…”—Fellini MS

Publisher: Da Capo
Paperback: 182 pages